Rios: 140 here I come

By Boxing News - 04/15/2012 - Comments

Image: Rios: 140 here I comeBy Jason Kim: Fresh off his controversial 12 round split decision win over Richard Abril (17-3-1, 8 KO’s) last night at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, unbeaten Top Rank fighter Brandon Rios (30-0-1, 22 KO’s) won’t be looking back to try fix his disappointing decision win over Abril and instead will be moving up to the 140 pound division to campaign as a light welterweight.

Rios said to AP “He [Abril] held a lot. I thought the referee should have penalized him for holding…I did fight well. 140 pounds is where I am going. 140 here I come.”

He didn’t fight well, and Abril wasn’t holding to the point where he should have lost points. It might seem that way to Rios, because he was so inept but that’s on him. He should have learned how to fight before taking on a guy as good as Abril. All Abril did was expose Rios’ lack of boxing skills, as he showed no head movement, defense, or ability to fight on the inside.

Rios could be facing Juan Manuel Marquez in July in a fight in the Cowboys Stadium. Hopefully Rios’ promoter wakes up and realizes that Rios doesn’t have the skills to be in with Marquez.

Unfortunately for Bob Arum at Top Rank, this could be the beginning of the end for Rios as a top fighter. He was never a great fighter as it is, but at lightweight (135lbs), Rios had an advantage of being a bigger fighter in a weak division permeated by mostly smaller fighters without a lot of power. But in moving up to light welterweight, Rios won’t be big and will have few advantages against the better fighters at that weight unless he’s able to controversial decisions every time he faces someone good.

Both Abril and John Murray, Rios’ last two opponents, pretty much exposed Rios as being a limited fighter who can only deal with fighters that stand directly in front of him. Abril had Rios looking confused and out of his league last night. Rios won the fight by the scores 117-111 for Abril, and 116-112 and 115-113. However, Rios appeared to win only two or three rounds at the most. He was badly outclassed by Abril, and never did adapt to his fighting style. The only time Rios could land anything was when Abril was holding onto him in a clinch. Under those circumstances, Rios was able to land short punches but with no power on them. Where did his power go? He probably lost it due to his struggles to try and make weight this past week. He failed to make the 135 pound limit after weighing in at 137lbs on his first attempt and 139 on his second attempt.

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